Center Team

Administrative Core 

Anna Dunaevsky, PhDAnna Dunaevsky, PhD, CoNDA Director  

Dr. Dunaevsky is a tenured professor and the Center Director for the CoNDA Center. She is also the Vice Chair of Basic and Translational Research at the Department of Neurological Sciences at UNMC. Her research examines the mechanisms that both refine neural circuitry in the developing normal and diseased mammalian CNS and that reemerge during learning in the adult CNS. Her research program utilizes multidisciplinary approaches to the study of synaptic and glial development and remodeling in health and disease, and includes anatomical, molecular biological, biochemical, imaging and electrophysiological methods. As the Center Director, she works closely with the other Core Directors, the Center Administrator and the Supervisory Committee to guide its development.

Jenny Brady, Center Administrator

Ms. Brady provides administrative oversight for all aspects of the Center and works closely with the Center Director, Project Leaders, and the Supervisory Committee to ensure that the Center fulfills its goals.

 

 

Matt McCoy

Matthew McCoy, Grants Administrator

Mr. McCoy is responsible for fiscal administration of the center and interaction between academic and programmatic units and proposal support for Project Leaders. Mr. McCoy has over 10 years of experience working in grants administration, reviewing proposals, budgets, and supporting documentation for compliance with sponsor guidelines.

Neuroimaging Core 

David Warren

David Warren, PhD, Imaging Core Director

Dr. David Warren is the Director of the Neuroimaging Core.  He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurological Sciences at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and also the Director of UNMC's Core for Advanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging (CAMRI).

Dr. Warren is an expert in neuroimaging and brain stimulation, especially MRI and TMS-based methods. Dr. Warren provides oversight of all aspects of the Core, including major equipment such as the MRI system, as well as the brain stimulation suites and Core computational services. He also provide leadership on the data analytical aspects of the Core, including functional connectivity, timeseries analysis, connectomic analysis, and other advanced computational methods.

Stephen Gliske, PhD

Stephen Gliske, PhD

Dr. Stephen Gliske is overseeing the MEG. Dr. Gliske is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Dr. Gliske has significant experience in processing signals with the main data modalities being EEG (both intracranial and extracranial), MEG, and polysomnograms (PSGs, i.e., sleep studies), including subsequent 3D source reconstruction via integration of MRI and CT data. Dr. Gliske provides oversight of major equipment such as the MEG system and related computational resources.  He will also provide support for MEG-related data analysis including source localization/reconstruction, timeseries analysis for high-frequency data, and multimodal integration of MEG/MRI data. 

Translational Imaging and Behavioral Assessment Core

Anna Dunaevsky, PhD

Anna Dunaevsky, PhD Translational Imaging and Behavioral Assessment (TIBA) Core Director

The TIBA Core is directed by Dr. Anna Dunaevsky whose expertise stretches across multiple microscopy methods, including in vivo multiphoton microscopy, to study neuronal and glial development in mouse models of neurodevelopmental disorders and in combination with behavioral analysis. Dr. Dunaevsky works with the sub core directors to further develop the TIBA core to support preclinical and translational neurocognitive studies in animal models.

Heather Jensen-Smith, PhD

Heather Jensen-Smith, PhD
Mutliphoton Microscopy Director

Dr. Heather Jensen Smith is Research Assistant Professor at UNMC. Her scientific contributions have focused on the development and use of various imaging methodologies for representation of biological phenomena during normal and disease states. Her particular expertise has been in studying the cellular mechanisms of hearing loss. She will oversee the multiphoton microscope and will assist investigators in use of intravital microscopy and multiphoton excitation/imaging to collect both high-resolution and whole brain images in live animals, fresh tissue explants, as well as various types of fixed samples.

Yutong Liu, PhD

Yutong Liu, PhD
Small Animal MRI Director

Dr. Yutong Liu is an Associate Professor at the Department of Radiology at UNMC. Dr. Liu has a broad background in biomedical imaging with an expertise in MRI. His research focuses on the development of imaging and image analysis methods to study human diseases modeled using small animals and non-human primates. He will be provide the oversight over the 7T MRI instrument including the staff operating it as well as train new users and advise on experimental design.

Bahvesh Kevadiya, PhDBhavesh Kevadiya, PhD
Small Animal PET Scanner Director

 

Mystera Samuelson, PhD

Mystera Samuelson, PhD
Director of the Animal Behavior Analysis Facility

Dr. Mystera Samuelson is the Director of the Animal Behavior Core at UNMC. She has extensive research experience and training in ethology and comparative cognition, with a wide variety of species ranging from cetaceans to rodents. Her focus and passion is generating reliable and reproducible data through umwelt-appropriate methodologies, while upholding and advancing the highest standards of animal welfare.

Research Project Leaders 

Janelle Beadle, PhD

Janelle Beadle, PhD
Research Project Leader

Dr. Janelle Beadle leads The Impact of Aging on the Neural and Behavioral Bases of Empathy project at the CoNDA Center. Dr. Beadle is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Gerontology at UNO. Her current work examines the neural and psychological bases of empathy through studies of patients with acquired brain injury, psychiatric disease and healthy aging.

Pilot Project Leaders 

Max Kurz, PhD

Max Kurz, PhD
Pilot Project Leader

Dr. Max Kurz leads the pilot project, Neuromagnetic Signatures of Down Syndrome at the CoNDA Center. Dr. Kurz is an Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy at UNMC. His ongoing clinical research utilizes multimodal brain imaging (magnetoencephalography, structural imaging) and advanced biomechanical analysis techniques to evaluate the motor actions of adolescents with cerebral palsy. These established MEG experimental procedures serve as the backbone for the research design that is being employed in this CoNDA Center pilot investigation on the cortical oscillations seen in adults with Down syndrome.

Kelly Stauch, PhD

Kelly Stauch,PhD 
Pilot Project Leader

Dr. Kelly Stauch leads the pilot project, Immunometabolism in Parkinson’s Disease: Peripheral Marker and Correlation with Neuroimaging at the CoNDA Center. Dr. Stauch is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurological Sciences at UNMC. Her research examines the mechanisms leading to bioenergetic dysfunction and the role this plays in modulating pathogenesis of brain injury, aging, and neurodegenerative disease, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease (PD). Her current CoNDA pilot project utilizes her expertise and novel reproducible rat model of PD to elucidate the relationship of peripheral and neuroimaging biomarkers to PD disease course.

Internal Advisory Committee 

Jeff French Jeff French, PhD
Supervisory Committee Member

Dr. Jeff French is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at UNO. He serves as a member of the CoNDA Center’s Supervisory Committee. His research areas include reproductive physiology and behavior as well as vocal communication in primates.

Howard Fox, MD, PhD

Howard Fox, PhD
Supervisory Committee Member

Dr. Howard Fox is the Senior Associate Dean of Research & Development in the College of Medicine and a Professor in the Department of Neurological Science at UNMC. He serves as a Supervisory Committee member for the CoNDA Center. His research involves the pathogenesis of disease. He has done the majority of this work in vitro in cellular and molecular biology studies, in vivo in rhesus monkeys, rats and mice, as well as in studies on human specimens.

Ryan McCreery

Ryan McCreery, PhD
Mentor and Supervisory Committee Member

Dr. Ryan McCreery is the Director of Research at Boys Town National Research Hospital, as well as the Audibility, Perception, and Cognition Laboratory. He serves as a mentor to Dr. Heinrichs-Graham and as a member of the Supervisory Committee for the CoNDA Center. His research aims to describe how amplification, language and cognition support speech perception in children who are hard of hearing in effort to maximize outcomes for children wearing hearing aids.

Sara Myers

Sara Myers, PhD
Mentor and Supervisory Committee Member

Dr. Sara Myers is an Associate Professor of Biomechanics and the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Research and Creative Activity at UNO. She serves as a mentor to Dr. Beadle and as a member of the Supervisory Committee for the CoNDA Center. Her research aims to improve physical function and quality of life in patients with peripheral artery disease (PAD). She has examined mechanisms that contribute to walking problems in patients with PAD and is working on new therapeutics and assistive devices to improve quality of life and help individuals with PAD do the activities they want with less pain.

Jian Zuo Jian Zuo, PhD
Supervisory Committee Member Dr. Jian Zuo is a Professor and the Chair of the Department of Biomedical Sciences at Creighton University. He serves as a member of the CoNDA Center’s Supervisory Committee. His research interests include neurodegeneration and function, regeneration and protection of sensory hair cells in the cochlea.

External Advisory Committee

Deanna Barch

Deanna Barch, PhD
External Advisory Committee Member

Dr. Deanna Barch is the Chair and Gregory B. Couch Professor of Psychological & Brain Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis. Dr. Barch is also a Professor of Radiology at WashU and serves as a member of the CoNDA Center’s External Advisory Committee. Her laboratory examines cognitive and language deficits in disorders such as schizophrenia, and the neurobiological mechanisms that contribute to such deficits. Her research includes behavioral, pharmacological, and neuroimaging studies with normal and clinical populations.

Patricia Reuter-Lorenz

Patricia Reuter-Lorenz, PhD
External Advisory Committee Member

Dr. Patricia Reuter-Lorenz is the Chair of the Department of Psychology and the Michael I. Posner Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of Michigan. Dr. Reuter-Lorenz serves as a member of the CoNDA Center’s External Advisory Committee. Her research investigates how aging affects the neural and cognitive mechanisms of attention, working memory and executive control.

William Mobley William Mobley, MD, PhD 
External Advisory Committee Member 

Dr. William Mobley is the Chair of Department of Neurosciences at University of California San Diego. Dr. Mobley is a clinician and researcher who is internationally known for his work on degenerative diseases of the central nervous system such as Alzheimer’s disease and the neurobiology of Down syndrome.

Rick Bevins

Rick Bevins, PhD 
External Advisory Committee Member 

Dr. Rick Bevins is the Chair of Department of Psychology at University of Nebraska, Lincoln. Dr. Bevins is also the director of the Rural Drug addiction Research Center, another COBRE center in NE.  Dr. Bevins’ expertise is in neuroscience, pharmacology and animal learning and behavior. Dr. Bevins uses preclinical animal models to elucidate the behavioral, neural, and pharmacological factors involved in the etiology of drug abuse.